Amazon Reportedly Facing Big Antitrust Suit From Lina Khan's FTC

The FTC chair, who has led the agency to file several suits against Amazon, is reportedly gearing up for a big lawsuit.

David Lumb Mobile Reporter
David Lumb is a mobile reporter covering how on-the-go gadgets like phones, tablets and smartwatches change our lives. Over the last decade, he's reviewed phones for TechRadar as well as covered tech, gaming, and culture for Engadget, Popular Mechanics, NBC Asian America, Increment, Fast Company and others. As a true Californian, he lives for coffee, beaches and burritos.
Expertise Smartphones | Smartwatches | Tablets | Telecom industry | Mobile semiconductors | Mobile gaming
David Lumb
2 min read

FTC chair Lina Khan.

Graeme Jennings-Pool/Getty Images

The Federal Trade Commission under chair Lina Khan is gearing up to file a "far-reaching" antitrust lawsuit against Amazon, Bloomberg reported Thursday. 

The FTC is expected to file the suit in the coming weeks, which sources tell Bloomberg will allege the tech giant pressures online merchants to use its in-house logistics service by rewarding those who do use it and punishing those who don't. 

News of the potential FTC suit comes just two weeks before Amazon Prime Day, with third-party retailers using its marketplace also able to tap into the Prime Day sales.

Khan has been an outspoken advocate for antitrust enforcement of Big Tech since her appointment as FTC chair in mid-2021. As she outlined in her vision for the agency's consumer protection mission, the FTC would be taking "a holistic approach to identifying harms" that attacked root causes of corporate behaviors that negatively affected consumers. 

Despite Amazon accusing Khan of bias for publishing a widely cited essay (PDF) about the tech company and antitrust while at Yale Law School, she has guided the agency to file several consumer protection lawsuits against Amazon since assuming her role at the FTC. 

In its consumer protection capacity, Khan's FTC has also scrutinized Amazon's acquisitions and mergers, like when it sought to buy iRobot, the maker of Roomba robot vacuums, for $1.7 billion last September -- a deal that still hasn't cleared regulators. Most recently, the agency sued Amazon for signing customers up for Prime memberships without their consent, with Khan elaborating in a tweet that the company intentionally obstructed consumers from canceling. 

The FTC declined to comment. Amazon did not respond to a request for comment by time of publication.